For many PAs, the task of sourcing and buying corporate gifts has become something of a minefield, where each purchase has to pass business’ rules and bribery test. So if buying and receiving gifts should be done with caution, it does not mean that it is to avoid completely.

Gift Giving

One of our customers in the investment industry explains:

“We used to send corporate gifts to our institutional investors but have ceased to do so. However, we still send Christmas hampers to the directors of the various companies we are involved with”.

Hampers make a great gift and you can tailor what they contain. Being able to personalise your gift can add something special.

Before placing your order, sit down and work out what you know about the recipient: do they have a favourite hobby, do they drink alcohol, are they coeliac with the need to avoid treats with gluten? A bit of detective work wouldn’t go amiss – why not put in a quick call to the recipient’s PA and ask a few questions to help you choose how to fill a hamper?

Gifts can also be made special by adding extra touches to their presentation. Beautiful packaging personalization – which can be included as part of the gift purchase – and cards with a personal message show that you care and make a lasting impression. If you can, include a note referencing the special relationship. Of course, this all takes time so let it do it to professionals.

According to McKinsey research, a business can expect to lose between 10 and30 per cent of its customers each year, which underlines just how important relationship building can be. Above all, your chosen gift should be practical so it doesn’t end up in the bin. High-impact, always well received gifts could include a bottle of champagne with a personal note or the finest box of chocolates.

Anything unexpected is usually a hit. You could also consider ditching the Christmas gift and sending a New Year parcel instead such as a detox, fruit hamper, which is sure to go down well.